Chassepot Needle

Front guard screw

Mauser Model Spandau Caliber

The name of Mauser has long been identified with German firearms. It started back in 1871 when the Prussian Army adopted the cal. 11 mm. Model 71 single-shot rifle. It was an immediate success since it used a brass case in lieu of the old paper-covered needle-gun cartridge.

When the need arose for a magazine-fed weapon, Mauser submitted his design which combined the Model 71 bolt system and the Winchcster-type tube feed. The tube held 8 rounds; if one round was placed in the chamber and another on the cartridge lifter, the rifle then became a 10-shot repeater.

When the Model 71/84 was accepted by the German armed forces, production was instituted on a royalty basis at the government arsenals at Amberg, Spandau, and Erfurt. The Mauser firm manufactured very few rifles of this model. By 1887 the entire German Army had been armed with the repeating rifle. But the success of the big-bore gun was short lived. The invention of smokeless powder made it obsolete, and the gun was eventually replaced by the Model 88 in cal. 8 mm.

The Model 71/84 remained in Service long enough to see use in the Boxer Rebellion in 1900-1901. When World War I broke out, some units of Jaeger troops as well as Colonial troops in East Africa were still armed with the old weapon. Some even turned up in the hands of the Volkssturm during World War II.

The Model 71/84 is a simple, rugged arm. The massive operating parts were designed for hard use and long service. To load the gun, open the bolt, and push the cutoff to the rear. The cartridge lifter can then be depressed and the cartridges fed into the magazine tube. The bolt does not have the forward locking lugs that made later Mausers so famous. Instead, the bolt is locked by the massive rib to which the bolt handle is attached. The safety catch arrangement used on this gun was carried down with little change to all later Mausers. When it is facing left, the gun is ready to fire. When turned to the right, it locks the firing mechanism and the bolt. The gun is equipped with a cutoff which allows the full magazine to be held in reserve while the gun is operated as a single-shot weapon.

Firing Mechanism Chassepot

bolt stop screw (9). This will allow the round washer-like bolt stop (8) to move upward and clear the receiver bridge. Do not try to remove the bolt stop screw. It cannot be removed unless the retainer pin (7) is knocked out and this is rarely necessary. Then push the cutoff lever (17) all the way forward.

How Assemble 201 Pistol Repeater

2 Turn the weapon on its side to keep the bolt stop (8) from falling back on the bolt and preventing its removal. Push the cutoff lever (17) back about Va" or enough to cam the cutoff spring tail (16) out of the path of the bolt. Pull bolt to rear and out of gun. Do not open or close the bolt violently when the washerlike bolt stop is loose as the ejector will batter the portion of the cutoff spring that protrudes through the receiver.

Since Rifle Dismounts

3 To disassemble the bolt, the ejector (1) must be removed. This can be lifted off easily since it is only held on by a half-moon spring. Next turn the cocking piece (10) assembly until the cocking piece cam drops into its cam groove on the bolt (6). Then push down the safety catch (12) as shown until it is free of the notch in the firing pin nut (11). Screw the firing pin nut off the firing pin and remove the cocking piece.

Rib Nut Gun

4 Once the ejector has been removed, the bolt head (2) can be disassembled regardless of whether the firing pin nut is on or off. The bolt head is retained by a lug that engages in the rib on the bolt. To remove the bolt head, simply turn it clockwise until the lug is free, then pull the bolt head out. If the firing pin nut (11) has been removed, the bolt head must be pushed toward the bolt while turning, since the head will be under heavy spring pressure as soon as the lug clears the bolt rib.

Chassepot Front Band

5 The bands must be removed to disassemble the gun. The front band (36) is retained by a cross key (37). The key is in turn retained by a lock screw (38). Therefore, remove the lock screw and drive the key out. The magazine tube can be pulled out when the key is removed.

Needle Gun Cartridge

6 Difficulty will sometimes be encountered when replacing the magazine tube. If so, depress the cartridge lifter (26) and push the follower forward well into the magazine tube with the little finger. At the same time push the magazine tube into its seat in the receiver or tie a string to a piece of rag and stuff it in the tube to hold the magazine follower (25) and spring assembly a short distance down the tube. The magazine tube can then be easily reassembled into its seat in the receiver and the rag pulled out freeing the magazine follower. ■

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  • pertti
    How to assemble a 201 pistol repeater?
    7 years ago

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